Rundown from Day of Reckoning …
Saturday’s final day of regular-season games for many teams saw Clemson complete its sweep of Florida State to win the ACC Atlanic Division title … N.C. State and BC claimed the final two spots in the ACC Tournament during … while Louisville, The Citadel, FAU and Texas State secured #1 seeds in their respective conferences (BIG EAST, SoCon, Southland and Sunbelt). (front-page photo courtesy of The Citadel)
Boston College’s 6-3, series-ending upset of Georgia Tech (#8 in the CB360 Composite National Rankings) played a dual role in qualifying the Eagles for the ACC postseason. BC and North Carolina (which finished its sweep of #21 Va. Tech, 10-2) tied for the 8th and final spot (13-16) and the tiebreaker extended to the third criteria. The teams did not meet head-to-head during 2010 and both were swept by regular-season champion Virginia. The tiebreaker then fell to head-to-head vs. the team with 2nd-best win pct. (Ga. Tech) … and UNC was swept by GT, while BC’s win on Saturday sent the Eagles to the ACC Championship.
To inch past #19 Connecticut atop the BIG EAST standings, #7 Louisville needed to sweep its doubleheader at Notre Dame and hope for Seton Hall to upset the Huskies. The Cardinals took care of the sweep (4-3 in the 7-inning game, then 13-3 in the finale) and the Pirates – who earlier this season upset Louisville and Pitt in game-3 – edged the Huskies, 3-2. Louisville was down to its final out in the first and second games of the series at ND but snatched away the wins to ultimately emerge as the BIG EAST #1 seed.
The Citadel (cb360 #43) finished off its resumed game at Georgia Southern on Saturday (7-2) to secure the outright Southern Conference regular-season title. #49 Texas State similarly won the Southland, thanks to its 8-0 win over Texas Arlington. #37 Florida Atlantic (a 14-10 winner over Florida International) and #39 Louisiana-Lafayette (won 13-1 for sweep at Louisiana-Monroe) finished in a tie atop the Sunbelt standings, with FAU earning the #1 seed on the head-to-head tiebreaker.
There were 11 upsets of CB360 top-50 teams on Saturday, with several top teams resting some of their regulars for the upcoming postseason. In addition to the aforementioned wins by BC, Seton Hall and UNC, the top-50 upsets included the following: at #9 South Carolina 11, #4 Florida 6 … at #24 Clemson 8, #10 Florida State 3 … UAB 8, at #22 Rice 5 … UC Riverside 15, at #26 UC Irvine 12 … Mississippi State 2, at #29 LSU 1 … Northwestern (La.) State 10, at #34 Southeastern Louisiana 7 … at Winthrop 8, #46 Liberty 5 … and Memphis 10, at #50 Southern Mississippi 8.
Clemson stunningly won all three games with FSU to finish tied with the Seminoles atop the ACC Atlanic (the Tigers earned the ACC #2 seed thanks to the head-to-head edge vs. FSU). Irvine – which entered the week with a comparatively low official NCAA RPI (#52) – has to now be considered in bubble territory and certainly could use a win over Riverside in Sunday’s finale.
Southeastern Louisiana had a strong first half of the season, but the Lions were swept by a Northwestern State squad that finished second in the Southland (SELA placed third and is only 16-14 during April/May). The losses by Liberty (its second of the Winthrop series) and Southern Miss similarly could be costly to both of those teams and their hopes for NCAA at-large spots, should they not win their conference tournaments.
Saturday saw the continuation and/or completion of 11 head-to-head matchups between CB360 top-50 teams (some mentioned above, plus): at #1 Arizona State 6, #41 Oregon State 5 … #2 Virginia 7, at #13 Miami 4 … #6 UCLA 12, at #30 California 4 … #14 Arkansas 7, at #15 Vanderbilt 5 (series clincher) … #16 Auburn at #17 Mississippi (sweep) … at #25 Arizona 9, #35 Stanford 8 (series tied) … at #31 Texas A&M 10, #32 Kansas State 2 (series tied) … and #33 Alabama 9, at #48 Tennessee 7 (sweep).
SATURDAY’S TOP-50 RESULTS (5/22/10)
(based on CB360’s Composite National Rankings)
• #5 Coastal Carolina at Radford – canceled (no makeup)
• #36 New Mexico at Utah – canceled (no makeup)